Choose one of the following transportation vehicles and explain why you think it has changed people's lives.
• automobiles • bicycles • airplanes
Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.
Automobiles, as the exponent of modern transportation vehicles, virtually have contributed to modern life more than most people have imagined, even though automobiles, as is true of all other technologies, have also created many problems.
The advancement of modern transportation, certainly including that of automobiles, has made more goods available in local markets. For example, in China, some fruits are only cultivated in the southern part of the country and not in the northern, such as litchi, sugarcane, pineapple—partly due to sheer gradient of temperature.
Thanks to the advancement of modern transportation system, people in the northern part of the country can now get those southern cultivated fruits readily available in almost every local market. In the far past when such system didn't exist, when goods could be transported only by primitive tools such as carts, some fruits such as litchi were the privilege of imperial household.
At the same time, the development of modern transportation has also made goods in local markets much less expensive. Take litchi for example again. Two decades ago, litchi was pretty expensive, and was a luxury. But the development has made the transportation easier and the cost lower and lower. On the other hand, due to previous factors, more merchants are engaged in the business that simultaneously intensified the competition, which certainly affected the prices. Thus, the price of litchi subsequently dropped. The same goes for other goods as well.
Today, people are able to buy almost any goods they want no matter where the origin of the goods is, and to make choice among more counterparts, and the best of all, to take the goods home with less expenditure. Moreover, advanced transportation vehicles such as automobiles have to some extent made people more independent than before. It is not hard to imagine that 50 years ago a young widow who lived in a small village and whose husband had died when she was 23 had little chance to get married again, for the sake of the tradition or culture, or whatever. But if that happened in the present day, things would be entirely different. Advanced transportation vehicles being readily available, she could easily get to another city within at most 2 days and by lower expenses, say from the small village located in the north east of China to the far southern city, Guangzhou - several thousands of miles away. That's a big city, that's a new city, and nobody knows her there; she has a brand new start, and she is entirely independent.